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Daniel Fox is Stella Borsella.
At a young age Daniel Fox gravitated toward musical expression and was playing piano by the age of six. Having grown up in Boise, Idaho the music scene focused on jazz. Having an insatiable need to play Daniel cut his teeth in this world,leading him to focus on jazz trumpet despite a yearning to play more contemporary music.
Growing up in a small city, working in the music industry was a distant cry from reality but because of his hunger to succeed, he studied Jazz in Los Angeles. After moving, Daniel’s world opened up and gave him access to shows and other musicians that rocked his musical foundation. While still in school Daniel started touring,skipping weeks of class at a time for a more practical education in what it means to be a musician in an evolving landscape.
It wasn’t long before Daniel was touring the world with bands like Beach Fossils and Slow Hollows, and in producing ins studios with artists ranging from mega producers, like Benny Blanco, Bjorn Yttling, and Tyler, The Creator to LA based talents such as Ryan Beatty and Ian Sweet.
While consistently working with artists on their music, Daniel became acutely aware of a need to work on his own musical endeavours, creating sounds and lyrical concepts that didnt fit inprojects he was working on. In order to differentiate this creative space in his mind Daniel created Stella Borsella, named after his great grandmother, a woman known for being the life of the party, but also an often undiscussed and unacknowledged mental illness; this shadow that would ultimately be passed down generations through his family and eventually to Daniel. Part of the process in growing and understanding himself, meant coming to terms with a mental illness he’d never confronted or acknowledged. Honesty, being the number one hallmark of Stella gave him space to grow as a musician and a person. Stella is a direct and unfiltered line to the pitfalls and triumphs that make this person.
After the Birth of Stella (First album), ideas would pour out, often disjointed, confusing and never truly finding a home. Long nights drinking and wallowing in self misery were the first step to understanding who Stella was. A cry from inside to look at the world differently and with a sense of ease but still marred by the bruises that Stella bore.
The EP, Stella was written over the course of 3 years while in and out of producing and performing with others. Fragments at first. Lyrics scrawled down hastily in fits of inspiration, voice memos of melodies and drum ideas scattered across hard drives and computers finally brought together made sense for the first time as a singular creative voice.
The EP is sonically composed of many of the genres Daniel had produced and performed over the years. Jazz harmony reminiscent of late era Miles Davis and Chick Corea mixed with the modern indie rock production styles of Alex G and pioneers the Pixies. Mixed and mastered with the hopes of emulating the energy of modern hip hop stars like Schoolboy Q.
During the creation of the album Daniel reached for things out of his normal wheelhouse both musically and spiritually. Flexing and building new neural networks in the ever evolving relationship to music and oneself. Through the process of self reflection, which was an integral part of writing, the EP turned out to be a love letter to himself and an exercise in self acceptance.
“The only person to impress or battle with was myself. I learned how to make music as me, but also love the things that aren’t and can never be perfect.”
Leading himself into an enlightened version of himself. Stella is the start of a journey of self acceptance and rebirth.
“Stella doesn’t need love. Stella just wants love. Stella wants love to be easy”
Bands that influenced the album: Miles Davis, Don Cherry, Schoolboy Q, Radiohead, Alex G, The Chamber Brothers, Surf’s Up by Beach Boys, Arca, Clark Terry, Clark, Caroline Polachek, Oasis, Bon Iver, Jim James, Brutus VIII, Chet Baker, Built to Spill, LSD and the Search for God, Nicolas Jaar/ Darkside, Acetone, Satoshi Ashikowa, Nine Inch Nails, Warthog, Blink 182, Westside Gunn, The Avett Brothers, Return to Forever, Ahmad Jamal, Johnny Greenwood, Coldplay